A new bakeshop is making a buzz in the local cakes and pastries industry. A business that started as a hobby is slowly becoming one of the promising customized cake designers and producers of quality local and artisan bread.
Lani Grace Lamarca – Lumasoc, a Commerce graduate turned English language teacher locally and abroad, never saw herself becoming a baker, much more owning and managing a bakeshop. After coming home to the Philippines, she took up basic baking classes under the TESDA scholarship and upgraded her skills by taking up advanced baking classes. Soon after, she started making cakes and pastries and selling them online. This is how the now emerging Gabe’s Oven started.
Along with the cakes and pastries, she also made lactation goodies which gained popularity among breastfeeding mothers. This gained her a partnership with a Lactation Health Clinic in Baguio. In 2018, a physical store was opened. She then added local bread to their product line. In 2019, she started catering to diners and in 2020, she shifted from making local bread to artisan bread.
Along with the shift to higher quality bread is the higher cost of production which negatively affected her sales. This prompted her to shift customers, from the usual neighbor patrons to the outside of the community. She advertised her products on Facebook and through word of mouth to gain more customers.
The 2020 Covid19 pandemic which placed the whole world in lockdown, was both a blessing and a curse for the business. Her sales from online customers increased but her physical store suffered losses. The DTI’s Livelihood Seeding Program (LSP) supported her business by providing a display stand that she can use in displaying her products. To enhance her entrepreneurial skills, she enrolled in the Kapatid Mentor ME (KMME) program and attended Negosyo Center trainings.
Joining KMME has taught her so many lessons in managing a business. She learned how to do sales forecasts, record keeping, product and materials inventory, cash flow, and income statements, among others. Aside from the lessons being taught during module classes, she is also thankful to KMME for the network that has been established not only with her co-mentees but also with the mentors and DTI staff. She now sees them not just as customers but also as business partners.
This also opened the doors to other DTI programs like the OTOP Next Gen (ONG) which helped her process her FDA License to Operate, trademark, and barcode. She was also able to join the Session Road Sunday Market Showcase, a weekly trade fair jointly conducted by the City of Baguio. This helped her a lot especially since the market was now open and her online transactions decreased.
She gives back to the community by continuously sponsoring the Baguio Breastfeeding Care Center of the North by giving lactation cookies during their activities.
Gabe’s Oven is located at Purok 2, Pinsao Proper, Baguio City and can be contacted at 09305363897 or visit her FB page at https://www.facebook.com/Gabesoven.
By: DTI - CAR